Area, 13,180 acres. Morley wapentake. - Population, 24,103 *1; Church-room, 800 *2; Net value, £275. -The Church was a Rectory belonging to the patronage of the Tilleys, and a Vicarage was ordained therein on the 3 Non. February, A.D. 1280. The advowson was afterwards purchased by William de Wartre, fourteenth Prior of Nostell, and on the 25th September 1301, it was appropriated to the Prior and Convent, and a Vicarage ordained therein, 7 Kal. October, A.D. 1301.
Patron, the Archbishop of York.
Impropriators, Trinity College, Cambridge.
In Pope Nicholas's Taxation the Church of Birstall is valued at £40 and the Vicarage at £10 per annum. In the King's books the Vicarage is valued at £23. 19s. per annum. In the Parliamentary Survey, vol. xviii. page 308, the Vicarage is valued at £30 per annum, and the great tithes at £300 per annum. Synodals, 6s. 8d. Procurations, 7s. 6d.
The glebe house is fit for residence.
Inclosure Acts (Scholes) 42nd Geo. III. (Wike) 53rd Geo. III.
There were two Chantries in the Church, viz. Tilleys and Daye.
There are seven Chapels in the parish, three of which are in the gift of the Vicar.
Dr. Whitaker says this parish was formed out of the Saxon parish of Morley, and that the Church was founded by Robert de Lacy.
Three Chantries are named in the Valor Ecc.
Mr. Scatchard notices a lich or copse gate, with a turnstile, and also gives a view of the Church.
Dr. Priestley was a native of Birstal.
15th July 1754, faculty to erect a gallery and organ.
Several faculties were granted in 1756 and 1757.
30th June 1781, additional burial-ground consecrated.
31st August 1801, a faculty was granted to take down three cottages, and apply the materials towards the repairs of the vicarage house.
The Register Books (including White Chapel) commence in 1558, defective in 1643, 1678; some subsequent chasms. Bolland's gift, by will, in 1783. Dividends of £300 three per cent consols, distributed in bread.
James Brook's gift, in 1711. 40s. rentcharge, distributed on St. Thomas's-day amongst 40 poor widows of the township.
John Rhodes's charity, by will, dated 30th August 1774. Dividends of £311. 5s. 6d. three per cents. to be distributed to poor housekeepers, who regularly attend Divine Service in the Church, and receive no relief from the poor's rate.
Free School, founded by William Armystead, Vicar of Burstall, in the 43rd Elizabeth. Endowment, a house and rent-charge of £8. 10s. per annum. United in 1819 to the National School, and six poor children are brought up there as free scholars of the old foundation. -Vide 17th Report, page 719.
Post town: Leeds.
Torre's MS. page 711. Abp. Sharp's MS. vol. i. page 179. Wood's (Bodleian) MS. No. 5101. Whitaker's Loidis et Elmete, page 248. Scatchard's Morley, page 283.
*1 Cleckheaton, 3,317; Drighlington, 1,676; Great and Little Gomersal, 6,189; Heckmondwike, 2,793; Hunsworth, 878; Liversedge, 5,265; Tong, 2,067; Wike, 1,918. Upwards of 500 men are employed in coal and iron mines, and in quarries.
*2 250 additional sittings, of which 100 are free, have been procured, towards which the Society made a grant of £150.